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# A Novel Solution for Resonant Scattering Using Self-Consistent Boundary Conditions

preprint

posted on 2023-01-12, 15:38 authored by B. Connor McClellan, Shane Davis, Phil ArrasWe present two novel additions to the semi-analytic solution of Lyman $\alpha$ (Ly$\alpha$) radiative transfer in spherical geometry: (1) implementation of the correct boundary condition for a steady source, and (2) solution of the time-dependent problem for an impulsive source. For the steady-state problem, the solution can be represented as a sum of two terms: a previously-known analytic solution of the equation with mean intensity $J=0$ at the surface, and a novel, semi-analytic solution which enforces the correct boundary condition of zero-ingoing intensity at the surface. This solution is compared to that of the Monte Carlo method, which is valid at arbitrary optical depth. It is shown that the size of the correction is of order unity when the spectral peaks approach the Doppler core and decreases slowly with line center optical depth, specifically as $(a \tau_0)^{-1/3}$, which may explain discrepancies seen in previous studies. For the impulsive problem, the time, spatial, and frequency dependence of the solution are expressed using an eigenfunction expansion in order to characterize the escape time distribution and emergent spectra of photons. It is shown that the lowest-order eigenfrequency agrees well with the decay rate found in the Monte Carlo escape time distribution at sufficiently large line-center optical depths. The characterization of the escape-time distribution highlights the potential for a Monte Carlo acceleration method, which would sample photon escape properties from distributions rather than calculating every photon scattering, thereby reducing computational demand.